Here's how you can achieve your dream retirement

Yes, it's possible to save for your retirement without skipping on the finer things in life.

This article was first posted on Honeycombers on 8 March 2018.

So retirement's not the most exciting thing to check off your bucket list and we've got to admit, it can seem a bit of a stretch to start planning for your future now. But what if we told you that it's actually not as daunting as it seems?

Sure, it's hard to get started when you're focused on living the good life now. We'll be honest: you might have to scale back on your indulgences, but you don't have to cut them out of your lifestyle completely. With the right advice, financial planning know-how and a realistic goal, achieving your dream retirement is possible. 

So you want to… retire in your '50s

Kicking back when you hit 50 seems like a pipe dream. Afterall, Singapore is one of the most expensive cities in the world and with the projected GST hike, retiring early almost seems impossible. Still, you shouldn't let that stop you from setting up for a comfortable retirement. Start by running your numbers with a retirement calculator to check if you can retire in your '50s. Once you've done your homework, approach a financial adviser for tips on how you can start building your nest egg – should you take it easy with a savings plan or consider unit trusts? To stay on track and adapt to the different changes in your lifestyle, don't forget to review your financial plans yearly!

So you want to… enjoy life to the fullest and travel the world

The globetrotting lifestyle may be an enviable fantasy, but let's be real – it's not a sustainable one unless you've got a sizable retirement fund, or a plan that'll bridge the income gap. Anthony Bourdain wannabes, you might want to think about your passive income options now. Bonds, annuity income or dividend income from investing in stocks… it never hurts to have a chat with a financial adviser to weigh the pros and cons. While you're at it, remember to start planning your expenses, and list every dollar that you’ll spend in your retirement.

So you want to… pick up a new hobby or volunteer

Pursuing your passions post retirement? Good on you! While you're busy taking up a new hobby or volunteering your time at a charity, it's important to look after yourself too. For peace of mind, invest in a long-term Eldershield plan as a safeguard for you and your loved ones. If you've already got a solid Eldershield policy, you could enhance your existing coverage with MyCare or MyCare Plus, which increases your disability payouts. And if you haven't already noticed, one recurring theme in retirement planning is prepping for a decrease in income, so be sure that you're all set for a simpler lifestyle by keeping your expenditure in check. Psst… sign up for MyRetirement, a product that helps you set aside cash savings in the years leading up to your retirement, provides retirement income a month after your selected age of retirement, and has returns of up to 2.38% per annum.

So you want to… become a global citizen

If your ideal retirement plan involves relocating from the hustle and bustle of Singapore, it's time to start saving (and planning) for your move now. Depending on a single income isn't enough for a whole new life overseas and it takes years of careful planning before you're ready to pack your bags. For starters, you can check if there are ways to create multiple "income streams", such as investing in real estates or businesses, and of course, investment products. One easy way is to (again) consult with a financial adviser to see if there are suitable plans for your goals. You'll also have to work out a way to clear all outstanding loans, debts and mortgages; it's always wise to start on a clean slate!

There are loads of retirement scenarios, and we are just scratching the surface. But one thing's for sure: by planning ahead, consulting a financial adviser and investing in the right financial products, you could pave the way for a dream retirement and still enjoy the best of your lifestyle – all within reason, of course.

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About the author: Aviva

We're one of the leading providers of retirement, investment, insurance and health solutions in Singapore. We're a provider of Medisave-approved Integrated Shield plans, an appointed insurer for the national ElderShield scheme, and have protected SAF servicemen since 1983. In the general insurance space, we were the pioneer insurer in Singapore to offer car insurance online, changing the market landscape. To find out more about the solutions we offer, please visit here.

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